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We've all seen that classic video, “The Curse of the Unled Boleo,” yes? Homer's greatest contribution to the world of dance. (And if you haven't, sorry, it doesn't seem to be available online any more. It's all about women who fake boleos. I'm sure every man is sure they've never faked one with them.)

Boleos aren't about legs. They're about hips. And when I say “hips,” I mean, “they're about holding fast to your own center and allowing yourself freedom.” Fear locks itself up in hips. In order to have free hips, you have to shut up the Afraid Voice in your head that grips them tight. It's “easier” to clutch your hip to you where it will be “safe,” and modern lifestyles create customary body positions that exacerbate this tendency, compounding the situation. (Aka, all that sitting around at computers.) It's scary to let a hip go. Anything could happen. If you're like me, you might need what seems like a truly ridiculous amount of external support network and love and care and people creating a safe environment for you to be you in, before you can let your hip go even a teeny bit. But learned behaviours don't just pop up out of the blue; they're intelligent learned survival responses to prior experiences. So you could beat yourself up for being what Brooke of the Liberated Body podcast calls “a lifelong hip-gripper,” or you could thank your body for going to extreme lengths to keep you “safe.”

And then when the right environment comes along and it is finally safe to let your hip be free, go ahead and enjoy the flowers and stars you'll feel in your brain as mind-altering chemicals course through your nervous system! Who needs drugs when you have a body?

A life lived in fear is a life half lived.

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